Romney Boycotting Senate Hearing on Election ‘Irregularities’

December 15, 2020 Updated: December 15, 2020

Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) will not attend the Dec. 16 hearing examining election “irregularities,” he announced Tuesday.

“I’m not going to go to that. I don’t think it is productive at this stage,” Romney said during an appearance on CNN.

Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, said while announcing the hearing that “a large percentage of the American public does not view the 2020 election result as legitimate because of apparent irregularities that have not been fully examined.”

The goal of the hearing is to “resolve suspicions,” he added.

A webpage for the hearing on Tuesday listed six witnesses: two President Donald Trump campaign lawyers, James Troupis and Jessie Binnall; former special counsel Kenneth Starr; state Pennsylvania Rep. Francis Ryan; Donald Palmer, commissioner of the U.S. Election Assistance Commission; and Chris Krebs, who was director of the Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency until Trump fired him last month.

But the page was later amended to remove Krebs and Ryan from the list of witnesses.

Chairman Ron Johnson
Chairman Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) speaks at the start of a Senate Homeland Security Committee hearing on the government’s response to the CCP virus outbreak in Washington, on March 5, 2020. (Samuel Corum/Getty Images)

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) called on Johnson to cancel the hearing last week, alleging holding it would undermine the United States.

Romney didn’t go that far, but said looking at election irregularities could be done “at some point down the road.”

“But those are marginal irregularities, meaning they’re not substantial and across the board, they are not substantial enough to change outcome of the election. It’s always appropriate to find ways to make elections more secure, but our systems have worked pretty well and they have over the years and they will continue to in the future,” he added.

Spokespersons for Johnson and Sen. Gary Peters (D-Mich.), the ranking member of the committee, didn’t respond to a request for comment.

The hearing will happen two days after the release of a report based on an audit of Dominion Voting Systems machines in Antrim County, Michigan, where officials first reported Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden received over 3,000 more votes than Trump.

Officials later said that the results were skewed and reported that Trump actually beat Biden by nearly 4,000 votes in the county.

Russell Ramsland Jr., co-founder of Allied Security Operations Group, which conducted the audit, said his team found Dominion’s system “intentionally generates an enormously high number of ballot errors.”

Both county and state officials said what happened was due to human error.

Dominion’s CEO told lawmakers in Michigan on Tuesday echoed the officials, though he acknowledged he only had a chance to conduct a “cursory review” of the report.

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